United States District Court, D. Colorado
FRANKY L. SESSION, Plaintiff,
VANESSA CARSON, Health Service Administrator, LINDSEY E. FISH, Medical Doctor, TEDDY L. LAURENCE, Physician Assistant, TEJINDER SINGH, Physician Assistant, ROBERT L. MANGUSO, Medical Doctor, TIMOTHY R. BROWN, Medical Doctor, and CORRECTIONAL HEALTH PARTNERS, Insurer, and DOE 1, Correctional Officer, Defendants.
Kristen L. Mix United States Magistrate Judge.
matter is before the Court on Plaintiff's Motion
Requesting Court Order to Only Allow CD's Holding X-rays
and CAT Scans Images to Be Viewed/Scanned in His
Presence [#72] and on Plaintiff's Motion
Requesting Court Order to Return CD's Holding X-rays and
CAT Scan Images [#73] (collectively, the
“Motions”). Defendants did not file Responses to
the Motions. The Court has reviewed the Motions, the entire
case file, and the applicable law. Based on the following,
the Motions [#72, #73] are DENIED without
who is proceeding pro se,  is presently incarcerated with the
Colorado Department of Corrections (“CDOC”) at
Colorado Territorial Correctional Facility
(“CTCF”). On October 21, 2018, Plaintiff
requested medical records from Arkansas Valley Regional
Medical Center (“AVRMC”) in connection with this
lawsuit. [#73] at 1. On November 2, 2018, AVRMC provided him
with documentation and a CD containing Plaintiff's X-rays
and CAT scan images of his “upper, center, lower
abdomen”, left knee, and lower left side rib cage area,
which had been used in connection with diagnoses made by
Defendants Teddy L. Laurence and Tejinder Singh. Id.
On November 16, 2018, CTCF's legal librarian Ms. Russell
“came into possession of the CD . . . which she
confiscated and refused [Plaintiff's] request to have
access and review the information on the
CD.” Id. The CD was “given to
Major Filer and placed in evidence somewhere” because
“CTCF will only allow [Plaintiff] to store and have
immediate access to CD's [sic] that are sent from the
Court or a Lawyer.” Id. at 2.
asks the Court for the following relief: (1) an order that
the confiscated CD be returned to the CTCF legal library; (2)
an order allowing CDs provided by AVRMC and other medical
entities “to be safely and legally stored in CTCF legal
library;” (3) an order allowing Plaintiff access to
these CDS “upon request during legal library
appointments;” and (4) an order allowing Plaintiff to
be present when staff members scan and review his CD(s) for
security reasons so he can protect his right to privacy of
medical records. See [#72, #73].
media sent to offenders in CDOC facilities that is connected
to litigation management is governed by Administrative
Regulation 750-03 § IV.M. In relevant part, this
regulation provides that “[l]egal materials contained
on electronic/audio media will be allowed into a correctional
facility only when sent by a court or an attorney” and
that “[e]lectronic/audio media sent in by private
parties, family members, friends, etc., is not
allowed.” A.R. 750-03 § IV.M.4. The regulation
Due to legitimate penological concerns related to safety and
security, the legal assistant will make a cursory review of
all electronic/audio media to ensure that they are of a legal
nature; do not contain personal communications; personal
pictures; maps; victim information; phone numbers, addresses,
social security, SID, or FBI numbers of victims, witnesses or
employees; do not divulge personal information regarding
other incarcerated individuals; do not contain training
manuals, restricted regulations, security threat group
A.R. 750-03 § IV.M.6.
Civ. P. 65(a) and (b) govern preliminary injunctions and
temporary restraining orders. “Where the opposing party
has notice, the procedure and standards for issuance of a
temporary restraining order mirror those for a preliminary
injunction.” Emmis Commc'ns Corp. v.
Media Strategies, Inc., No. 00-WY-2507CB, 2001 WL
111229, at *2 (D. Colo. Jan. 23, 2001) (citing 11A Charles
Alan Wright, et al., Federal Practice and Procedure §
2951 (2d ed.1995)). Here, because Defendants were given
notice and an opportunity to respond (even though they did
not), the Court analyzes the Motions [#72, #73] under the
standards for issuance of a preliminary injunction.
relief is an extraordinary remedy which should only be
granted when the moving party clearly and unequivocally
demonstrates its necessity. See Schrier v. Univ. of
Colo., 427 F.3d 1253, 1258 (10th Cir. 2005). In the
Tenth Circuit, a party requesting injunctive relief must
clearly establish the following: (1) the party will suffer
irreparable injury unless the injunction issues; (2) the
threatened injury outweighs whatever damage the proposed
injunction may cause the opposing party; (3) the injunction,
if issued, would not be adverse to the public interest; and
(4) there is a substantial likelihood of success on the
merits. Id. “The purpose of a preliminary
injunction is not to remedy past harm but to protect
plaintiffs from irreparable injury that will surely result
without their issuance.” Id. at 1267.
[b]ecause the limited purpose of a preliminary injunction is
merely to preserve the relative positions of the parties
until a trial on the merits can be held, we have identified
the following three types of specifically disfavored
preliminary injunctions . . . (1) preliminary injunctions
that alter the status quo; (2) mandatory preliminary
injunctions; and (3) preliminary injunctions that afford the
movant all the relief that [he] could recover at the
conclusion of a full trial on the merits.
Id. at 1258-59 (citations omitted). These disfavored
injunctions are “more closely scrutinized to assure
that the exigencies of the case support the granting of a
remedy that is extraordinary even in the normal
course.” Id. at 1259.
noted above, Plaintiff seeks an injunction requiring CDOC to
allow him to keep and access electronic media in the CTCF
legal library, even if not sent by a court or an attorney.
See [#73]. Thus, the relief Plaintiff seeks would
alter the status quo rather than preserve it and would also
require CDOC, a non-party, to act. Therefore, the injunctive
relief sought by Plaintiff “constitutes a specifically
disfavored injunction” that “must be more closely
scrutinized.” Schrier, 427 F.3d at 1261.
Accordingly, the Motion [#73] must be denied unless
Plaintiff's “right to relief [is] clear and
unequivocal.” Id. at 1258.
is well-established that prison management functions should
be left to the broad discretion of prison administrators to
enable them to manage prisons safely and effectively.
See, e.g., Meachum v. Fano, 427 U.S. 215
(1976). Courts should grant injunctive relief involving the
management of prisons only under exceptional and compelling
circumstances. Taylor v. Freeman, 34 F.3d 266,
269-70 n.2 (4th Cir. 1994); see also Citizens Concerned
for Separation of Church & State v. Denver, 628 F.2d
1289, 1299 (10th Cir. 1980). Indeed, the Court of Appeals for
the Tenth Circuit has stated that it “abhor[s] any
situation or circumstance requiring the intervention of the
federal courts in matters involving the administration,
control and maintenance by the sovereign states of their
penal systems. It is a delicate role assigned to the federal
courts to display that restraint so necessary in the
maintenance of proper federal-state relations.”
Battle v. Anderson, 564 F.2d 388, 392 (10th Cir.
1977) (quotation omitted). As such, “intervention in
the management of state prisons is rarely appropriate when
exercising the equitable powers of the federal courts. . . .
[This] is especially true where mandatory injunctive relief
is sought and only preliminary findings as to the
plaintiff's likelihood of success on the merits have been
made.” Taylor, 34 F.3d at 269 (citations
seeks an order against a non-party, i.e., Rick Raemisch as
Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Corrections.
The Tenth Circuit applies a heightened standard for litigants
seeking injunctive relief against non-parties. Andrews v.
Andrews, 160 Fed.Appx. 798, 800 (10th Cir. 2005).
“While the non-party status of an injunction's
target may [not] be a conclusive impediment, it nevertheless
heightens the hurdle that must be cleared to obtain the
injunction: not only must the motion advance considerations
satisfying the traditional injunction factors . . . but those
considerations must also constitute . . . ‘appropriate
circumstances' . . . to justify issuing an injunction
against a non-party.” Id. The
“appropriate circumstances” referred to by the
Andrews court require a ...